DoD

November 14, 2013

Shutdown cost DOD $600 million

Claudette Roulo
American Forces Press Service

Furloughs of civilian employees as a result of the government shutdown cost the Defense Department at least $600 million in productivity, the Pentagon’s top financial officer said.

During a Pentagon news conference, DOD Comptroller Robert F. Hale said that in addition to the lost productivity, the shutdown generated a number of other costs that have yet to be calculated.

We built up interest payments, because we were forced to pay vendors late, Hale said. We had to cancel training classes, so we had to bring the people home on orders and then send them right back again.

The short-term deal signed by President Barack Obama doesn’t put the department on firm budgetary ground, Hale noted. With no flexibility to move funds between accounts, and accounts frozen at 2012 levels, he said, the department will have to be as fiscally watchful as it can.

If that’s a vague answer, it’s because things are kind of vague, he said. It’s not a good way to run a railroad.

The temporary funding measure that allowed the government to reopen prevents DOD from starting new projects, Hale said. And one of the biggest problems, he added, is that it requires the department to buy the same ships it bought last year, because Congress appropriates by ship.

It’s a Groundhog Day approach to budgeting, the comptroller said.

The budget uncertainty will have an impact on staffing levels and morale, he added. If the budget stays at the level authorized under the Budget Control Act of 2011, he said, were going to have to get smaller. Hale added that the department will try to meet the staffing goals through attrition, but that either way, it will mean fewer civilian employees.

I’m a lot more worried about the morale effects, Hale said. We need some stability, and we need to keep telling [employees] they’re important, and then we need to show it through things like pay raises and no more furloughs, etc.

Without a change to the budget, there will also be military force reductions, Hale said.

I think all of us are aware that it will be a somewhat different, smaller military if we have to go through with those cuts, he added. We will be as prepared as we can, within the limits of time that we have, to be ready for a wide range of contingencies, because we know that’s what we face.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

The new fight: Writing cyber into the science of war

Every year, the Aspen Security Forum brings together the top minds in defense, intelligence and homeland security. This year, more than ever, the conversation is turning to cybersecurity – protecting computer networks and everything attached to them. Cyber is constantly changing the way conflicts and combat unfold. Here, former U.S. Navy Rear Adm. William Leigher offers insights...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Osakabe Yasuo)

Need help? Trust your ‘Shirt’

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Arizona — When young Airmen need help or are looking for guidance, a good place to start is with a senior NCO. Making it into the top 3 percent in the U.S. Air Force is a major accomplishment. Alt...
 
 

Local Briefs July 31, 2015

Sunset Horseback Ride August 8, 4 – 8 p.m. – Outdoor Rec Saddle up and enjoy a 2-hour sunset horseback ride through the Saguaro National Park.. Final deadline for sign-ups is July 31. Minimum age: 18. Cost of $25/person. Call 228-3736 for more information. White water rafting and camping Aug. 20 – 24 – Grand...
 

 
(Courtesy Photo)

A Q&A with Master Sgt. Jaime Lewis

The men and women of the 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) welcomed a new First Sgt. in May. Master Sgt. Jaime M. Lewis, began his career in 2000 as an Aerial Porter, where he performed duties such as passenger services, car...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/ Master Sgt. Jeffrey Allen)

Relationship building by means of the F-16

  America’s stars and stripes and Arizona’s lone copper star always wave proudly at the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Wing. But it’s the adjacent flags of coalition-partners – from the pacific island-nat...
 
 

Military life: Separated, but not alone

  MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho — As the dawn broke out over the mountains, I woke up to the sun peeping through my window. Once I got up I went straight to the kitchen to make my family breakfast yet in the back of my mind, all I could think about is how am I...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>